Etymology
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Words related to nigger

Negro (n.)
Origin and meaning of Negro

1550s, "member of a black-skinned race of Africa," from Spanish or Portuguese negro "black," from Latin nigrum (nominative niger) "black, dark, sable, dusky" (applied to the night sky, a storm, the complexion), figuratively "gloomy, unlucky, bad, wicked," according to de Vaan a word of unknown etymology; according to Watkins, perhaps from PIE *nekw-t- "night." The Latin word also was applied to the black peoples of Africa, but the usual terms were Aethiops and Afer.

As an adjective from 1590s. Use with a capital N- became general early 20c. (e.g. 1930 in "New York Times" stylebook) in reference to U.S. citizens of African descent, but because of its perceived association with white-imposed attitudes and roles the word was ousted late 1960s in this sense by Black (q.v.).

Professor Booker T. Washington, being politely interrogated ... as to whether negroes ought to be called 'negroes' or 'members of the colored race' has replied that it has long been his own practice to write and speak of members of his race as negroes, and when using the term 'negro' as a race designation to employ the capital 'N' [Harper's Weekly, June 2, 1906]

Meaning "African-American vernacular, the English language as spoken by U.S. blacks" is from 1704. French nègre is a 16c. borrowing from Spanish negro. Older English words were Moor and blackamoor. A Middle English word for "Ethiopian" (perhaps also "a negro" generally) was blewman "blue man."

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black (n.)

Old English blæc "the color black," also "ink," from noun use of black (adj.). It is attested from late 14c. as "dark spot in the pupil of the eye." The meaning "dark-skinned person, African" is from 1620s (perhaps late 13c., and blackamoor is from 1540s). The meaning "black clothing" (especially when worn in mourning) is from c. 1400.

To be in black-and-white, meaning in writing or in print, is from 1650s (white-and-black is from 1590s); the notion is of black characters on white paper. In the visual arts, "with no colors but black and white," it is by 1870 of sketches, 1883 of photographs. To be in the black (1922) is from the accounting practice of recording credits and balances in black ink.

For years it has been a common practice to use red ink instead of black in showing a loss or deficit on corporate books, but not until the heavy losses of 1921 did the contrast in colors come to have a widely understood meaning. [Saturday Evening Post, July 22, 1922]
nigra (n., adj.)

by 1944, American English, reflecting a white Southern U.S. pronunciation of Negro, but it was held to be a compromise made by those whites who had learned to not say nigger but could not bring themselves to say Negro, and it was thus deemed (in the words of a 1960 slang dictionary) "even more derog[atory] than 'nigger.' "

nig (n.)

c. 1300, "stingy person," which is connected to niggard (q.v.). As an abbreviated form of nigger, the word is attested by c. 1832, in American English, in the "Jim Crow" song. It is noted in an 1879 British book on colonial household management as "a term too often applied ... to the Indian natives."

nigga (n.)

also niggah, by 1925, representing southern U.S. pronunciation of nigger (q.v.).

niggerdom (n.)

"Negroes collectively," by 1855; see nigger + -dom.

niggerhead (n.)

from nigger + head (n.). A term used formerly in the U.S. of various dark, more or less globular things, such as "cheap tobacco" (1843), "protruding root mass in a swamp" (1859), a type of cactus (1877), and the black-eyed susan (1893). Variant negro-head is attested from 1781.